The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on December 5, 1997 · Page 209
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December 5, 1997

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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 209

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s c THE PALM BEACH POST FRIDAY, DECEMBER 5, 1997 Pro football FLORIDA CORPORATION INCORPORATE OVER THE PHONE... ITS EASY . -fk AM COM Pl.t 1 E - INCl-l DfS: Annie, wl MftSTERCARE CAR SERVICE i ; j p i 3 y-"t r?f "7 'I 1 1 i i latum i iuiiMnrtni f I vr ! I Bengals 41, Oilers 14 -T" ' X t If ( TH fVH a i"J : I 1 1 1 r YWM ii ?M I ZM Rookie corners cause for concern I Ten Cia Firjt downs Rushevyards Passing Punt Raturni KickoM Returns Interceptions Ret. Comp-Att-Int Sacked-Yards Lost Punts Fumbles-Lost Penalties-Yards Time of Possession 12 34 11-44 S4-274 131 23 H U 1-17) 3-74 M 0-0 U-K4 20-21-0 3-15 1-4 4-42 7 1-230 44 0-0 m 0-73 :21 40: Tennessee Cincinnati t I 14-14 M M N 1-41 First Quarter Cin Dillon 2 run (Pelfrey kick), 10:44. Cin-McGee I pass from Esiason (Pelfrey kick), 4 03. Second Quarter Cin Dillon 31 run (Pelfrey kick), :. Cin Dillon 1 run (Pelfrey kick), 5:57. Third Quarter Cin Dillon 2 run (Pelfrey kick), 7:05. Cin-FG Pelfrey 24, :44. Fourth Quarter Ten-W.Davis 5 pass from McNalr (Del Greco kick), 12:20. Cin-FG Pelfrey 40, 5:30. Ten-Kent II pass from McNalr (Del Greco kick), 3:31. A-49.0M. INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS RUSHING-Tennessee, McNalr 5-14, Roby I-12, George 5-11, Thomas 1-5. Cincinnati, Dillon 39-246, Carter 11-29, Milne 2-2, Bienlemy 1-0, Esiason l-(minus I). PASSING-Tennessee, McNalr 14-254-144. Cincinnati, Esiason 20-21-0-245. RECEIVING-Tennessee, W.Davis 4-45, Thomas 3-24, Roan 2-24, Wycheck 2-21, Sanders My, Kent 1-11. Cincinnati, Scott 443, McGee 4-43, Bieniemy 3-11, Dunn 2-44, Dillon 2-30, Hun-don 1-13, Battaglia 1-e, Carter 1-5. TACKLES-ASSISTS-SACKS Tennessee, Stewart 11-04, Bishop 100, Crook 7-2-0, Lewis 4-1-0, Ford 50, Wortham 4-1-0, Marts 40, D Walker 4-0-0, Jackson 31, Evans 30, Dor-sett 2-1-0, G.Walker 20, Lyons 1-1-0, Bowden 10, Hall 10, Holmes 10, L.Jones 10, Kit-lens 10, Del Greco 10, Stalling! 10, A.Williams 10. Cincinnati, Shade 71, Collins 4-0-I, Dixon 41, Sawyer 40, Copeland 30, Ambrose 20, Francis 20, Orlando 20, To-var 20, McDonald 1-1-0, Myers 1-1-0. INTERCEPTIONS Tennessee, None. Cincinnati, None. MISSED FIELD GOALS None. NFL leaders Quarterbacks Aft Com Yds TD Int i i fi" 'pv L- ... : t4&- S. Young, S.F. 285 192 23M 14 Chandler, Atl. 279 167 2191 14 i Favre, G B. 421 249 3175 21 14 Dilter, T.B. 334 199 2356 20 9 Johnson, Min. 452 275 3036 20 12 Aikman, Dal. 423 244 2745 16 9 Mitchell, Det. 414 236 2819 15 11 Plummer, Ariz 182 102 1449 I 9 T. Detmer, Phi. 244 134 1567 7 4 Frerotte, Was. 402 204 2682 17 12 Rushers Alt Yds Avg LG TD THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Cincinnati's Corey Dillon scores the first of his four touchdowns in Thursday's 41-14 victory over Tennessee. Dillon set an NFL rushing record for a rookie in a single game with 246 yards. Rookie Dillon runs over Oilers 1 1 f wM WM lavs. t'rri Bunk, Or per tit Stmt ill lncrraH, Cor par it Mtaattt, B mm9 Slock Onifitalc, Prtltmntir ham Varrft. Male Fitnif fm. Curat atui inun4uM ttatuMt 1 n l.u I Aku i ! Off .Mm rr Citrate Nan Prufrt Curat, LwatH Parum hipi. Uwr rnew, lih. ubai, i r twins. r wmat SMtruntum "V4. 'VS. A Cora aba available for unmrdtatr arfcrrry AMERiiAWYER 745-3202 688-9214 272-9228 IV fcwM M i Utar n m nrW -"- hM G0LF10. Walk 7:00 AM-12:00PM Ride 12:00 PM-3:00PM 7 DAYS A WEEK Tee time 3 days in advance Call 686-0948 ! Haverhill M. off Okeechobee Price subject to change urithout notice. THE CLUB AT WINSTON TRAILS NOV. 19th-DEC. 14TH RATES AM 1 1 AM Holts Si After 4PM Mon-Thurs 42 S34 '20 Si'ilaT J45'36 s20 Tournament - Events - Golf Outings Available pan "-' Golfs Newest Rangefmder Technology I Starting Time Reservations Call 561 439-3700 TakaLantanaorHypokuoRd to Jog Rd In Lake Worth Prices and otters subvert to Changs wtttKKjt nolic. Low no-hassle, no-haggle prices on America's most popular boats! 4295 45th Street West Palm Beach, FL ( Mile W. of 195) i'p In SAM'S Club Gift Certificates wilh purchase of qualifying SEW boat DECEMBER 4-7 ONLY 9am-7pm Thurs., Fri., Sat., Sun. Enjoy boating, the affordable all-family recreation. Choose from a variety of premium quality boats at low, SAM'S Club" prices. Immediate delivery on most models. Convenient monthly payment plans for qualified buyers. Non-members of SAM's Club welcome memberships, subject to qualification, available at sale! t OUTBOARDS LHEF 'MiiWA,.. .fee- immm Nov. 1st -Dec. 31st GOLF RATES k . . f 4 All Prices Include Green Fes & Cart Fee Champions ulub M Summerfktd 561283-1500 Located in Stuart on the west side of U.S. 1, 1000 ft. south of Cove Rd., 16 minutes north of Jupiter E it s .P.lon-Fri $35 ' Sat-Sun wj.u:itm fiYfil By Ethan J. SkoJnfck Palm Beach Post Staff Writer DAVIE The Lions are backed into a corner. Actually, two corners. Rookie cornerbacks Bryant Westbrook and Kevin Abrams will start for Detroit on Sunday night. but Lions coach Bobby Ross said that won t cause him to toss and turn too much under the covers. Dolphins notebook "I could sit and think and not sleep at night," Ross said. "But I'm not going to do that. I've got to sleep. Am I concerned? Yeah, big- time. Westbrook, the fifth overall pick irt the draft, won the starting left cornerback job in training camp, and has started 11 games. lhe 5-toot-S Abrams was a sec ond-round pick who didn't get his first start until last Thursday, in a win against the Chicago Bears. He will start again Sunday, with Corey Raymond still nursing a sore foot. Abrams blew the coverage on Erik Kramer s 78-yard touchdown pass to Ricky Proehl. Later, Chris Penn beat Abrams for a 33-yard catch to help set up a field goal. Dolphins coach Jimmy Johnson said, "their corners have a lot of ability. Westbrook was exceptional last year, and Abrams has tremen dous speed. B Plans for Phillips: Jimmy Johnson is hedging publicly, yet privately he has related his plans to play newly acquired running back Lawrence Phillips quite a bit this season, if not this week. Phillips practiced again Thurs day, and was slowed a bit by soreness in his left knee. Johnson announces his first four of eight inactives today, and Phillips is un likely to be one of them. He thinks it s bursitis, John son said of Phillips' knee. "I think there s more there. Yet Johnson does not believe any surgery will be necessary until after the season. B Seeking support: Reaction to the Dolphins' signing of Phillips keeps coming in. Tyrone Williams, a Green Bay Packers cornerback who served 126 days at a Nebras ka correctional facility earlier this year for a misdemeanor weapons charge, was a Nebraska teammate of Phillips'. It s good to have a nucleus to depend on, Williams said. Here we have guys who I can go and talk to. I don't know if he had that situation in St. Louis. "I think he's gotten a bad rap, but there are some things that he has to control himself and can fix. t's up to him. ... He needs to surround himself with some good guys who can kind of guide him along. B Secondary shake-up: Starting strong safety Shawn Wooden has a slight tear in his right forearm, and starting right cornerback Sam Madison has a sore ankle. Both are expected to play Sun day. Just in case, Calvin Jackson has been working at his old cor nerback position, and Corey Har ris and George Teague are switching off at free safety. B No blackout: Miami's ABC affiliate, WPLG-10, and Office De pot agreed to guarantee the purchase of any remaining unsold tickets by game time. I hat means the game will be televised in Dade and Broward counties. Mitchell But not all the critics. "Everywhere I'd been, I was well-thought-of and liked as a player," Mitchell said. "And (in Detroit) was really the first time in my life when people questioned whether I could play, questioned everything about me. It has made me a better person. It kind of gets me fired up now. You just learn that this life isn't about what happens to you, but it's about what you do about what happens." with 12 yards on a fake. George carried only five times for 11 yards overall, his lowest totals in two NFL seasons. B Baltimore Ravens: Coach Ted Marchibroda named reserve quarterback Eric Zeier the starter for Sunday's game against Seattle, replacing Vinny Testa-verde, who has not recovered from a knee injury. Chicago Bears: The team has allowed an NFL-high 377 points. If they give up three more Sunday to Buffalo, the Bears will be the most scored-upon team in 78 years of Chicago football. B Denver Broncos: If both Denver and Kansas City finish 13-3, the Chiefs win the AFC West and get home field for the playoffs because they would have one division loss to two for the Broncos. That would make Denver the fourth seed in the AFC, behind the other two division winners. B Kansas City Chiefs: The team signed free agent corner-back Bucky Brooks to a two-year contract. Brooks, 27, had three special teams tackles in three games with Green Bay before being released Nov. 25. He also had two tackles for Jacksonville in three games this season. B New York Giants: Coach Jim Fassel said he won't hesitate to replace struggling quarterback Danny Kanell with Dave Brown in Sunday's key game at Philadelphia. "I don't like to pull quarterbacks, but he's a young quarterback and he's learning how to play," Fassel said of Kanell, a former FSU standout who has thrown four interceptions and been sacked 12 times in the past four games. "We're also in a playoff race, and I need to do whatever I can to win games." B San Diego Chargers: The team will place quarterback Stan Humphries on the injured reserve list today, officially ending Humphries' season. He hasn't played since suffering a concussion Nov. 2 at Cincinnati, his second in 18 days. sacked Lions' mi nioiMUt- nUIL ,"""BT II rt rilTCn U II .i x: ii nt i m tr II 55aM0W-30oil IfiMlinOC I HI HI U UU iw u If 990 ll I Most vehicles. II Price includes oil disposal tee ffl MasterCare MAINTENANCE TUNE-UP According to the service schedule in your owner's manual, we'll install new Bosch spark plugs. Most i cyl k wr cars 6 & B stoMtv higher Iransvefse V-6 enrj & AVC inlerterence extfl MasterCare9 COMPLETE RADIATOR SYSTEM FLUSH Test tor leaks, chemically clean system, refill with required amount of recycled coolant and add sealantlubricant. TRANSMISSION SERVICE Maintain your transmission and prevent costly repairs with new filter, new pan gaske! ana trans fluid refill. Front Rear Whwl Dmvi WM Oriw $CS9 $qiS9 ULT Mosoehiclts. MasterCare p i V-BELT REPLACEMENT Change weak and worn belts before they break. Alternator, AC, water pump belts and more. siieo Most vehicles. Per belt plus installation Standard V-belts onry All Season, Steel-Belted Whitewall 4 FOR 13" SIZES 4 FOR $79.99 S2099 U-SIZES 4 FOR $89.99 15" SIZES 4 FOR $99.99 80 & 75 series sizes ontv P1S580R13 , Tread design may vary. NO DEALERS NO CARRYOUTS II M .T V'ii IM -TaTWl gaMiiiTiiMTMiiin ii ifli iTTITaiilagtfBirr TTr im MON-FRI 7:30-7:00PM SAT 7:30-5PM Boynton Beach 9780 S. Military Trail 736-3602 OPEN SUNDAY MV09438 Palm Beach Mall 1861 PB Lakes Blvd 471-5861 OPEN SUNDAY MV09409 Boca Raton Glades & Federal 392-5080 OPEN SUNDAY MV09424 North Palm Beach 541 Northlake Blvd 842-1595 OPEN SUNDAY MV09426 West Palm Beach 4070 Okeechobee Blvd 689-8850 OPEN SUNDAY MV09427 Lake Worth 3810 Jog Road 965-8001 OPEN SUNDAY MV09423 Delray 5190 W. Atlantic 496-0446 OPEN SUNDAY MV09429 217 SE 6th Ave. 278-0341 MV09426 Juno Beach 1 21 20 US Hwy 1 624-2601 MV09442 Stuart 3060 S E. Federal Hwy 286-971 1 UrtN bUNUAY MV09441 Ft. Pierce 41 60 Okeechobee Rd 461 -0701 OPEN SUNDAY MV09439 Jensen Beach 3542 N W. Federal Hwy 692-31 94 urtIM bUNUAY MV09440 l'J" r N rat do M Khwvi guwntHd mfcajt your Fwistont Rend win r- im rj lopy o. tKP WTWK1 WMfMIV JUl MWllonl i 1 ii Iftr th Ihi nun ha mnrfut lint unki-iht. r.u t. f u , i.-iiytrm. riOfKU 0" 'O'k SrKfK product offeiHw ind lnd designs may vy Pncn inintwi iirtiwnnlrri wvkh. dldtt ptini and otht oflfri lynhta ; itlnn lit L Caimra Taniait C d.i.i. u-.. ... .. I rmt ofltff ' -ti Afif MOT AH AUIHOflW 0 MICMf L W Of AlER r.raritt tarmc maris luaihhU hu Torfil Cum U.i...! a ..... I Jo Payment lor 90 Dsys on qualifying piwcfiasts Ho Interest due s " 4""")""y (www " vw iu mm w nays, tmeiesl at a ed rale (2 1 84 APfl)variable rale ( 1 9 30 APR as ot 101 m-w PR ny vary) will he imposed from the date ol ourchase nti I hiiA m t,.u iuh,. on i i I . Vm "i um fi-urii. jru uavs nniflllinn iinsiice CtHlije X) 50 n BT I (U Most vehicles. I --t 1 MasterCare f V.. .... WIIWUllWWaaM.mill. f limited J43 - li vlJifi ill i s H I.'- s 4 Sanders, Det. Levens, G.B. Hevst, S.F. R.Harris, Chi. E. Smith, Dal. Walters, Phi. R. Smith, Min. Dunn, T.B. Allen, Was. Anderson, Atl. 263 1594 4 1 82t 9 248 1237 4.6 521 7 234 1019 4.4 51 4 251 974 3.9 68t 10 234 963 4.1 44 3 250 944 3.1 28 5 184 934 5.1 78t 173 738 4.3 52t 2)0 724 3.4 34 214 712 3.3 39 NFL Injury report The National Football League injury report for this week't games as provided by the league: Sunday ATLANTA (5-8) AT SAN DIEGO (4-9) - Falcons: QUESTIONABLE: K Morten Andersen (hamstring); CB Michael Booker (hip); DT Travis Hall (ankle); CB Lenny McGIII (thigh), PROBABLE: CB Juran Bolden (hamstring); CB Ronnie Bradford (elbow); CB Ray Buchanan (hamstring); RB Byron Hanspard (knee). Chargers: OUT: QB Stan Humphries (concussion). PROBABLE: CB Dwayne Harper (thigh); TE Freddie Jones (leg). BUFFALO (6-7) AT CHICAGO (2-11) - Bills: OUT: CB Marlon Kerner (knee-Injured reserve); RB Tim Tlndale (knee-Injured reserve). QUESTIONABLE: CB Raymond Jackson (hip). PROBABLE: TE Robert Coons (ankle). Bears: QUESTIONABLE: WR Bobby Engram (ankle); TE Keith Jennings (shoulder). PROBABLE: WR Fabien Bownes (hip); DE Alonzo Spellman (shoulder). DENVER (11-2) AT PITTSBURGH (9-4) -Broncos: OUT: G Mark Schlereth (back). PROBABLE: G Brian Hablb (back); CB Randy Hilliard (eye); DT Maa Tanuvasa (ankle); DE Alfred Williams (elbow). Steelers: OUT: LB Greg Lloyd (ankleInfection). DOUBTFUL: TE Kirk Botkin (knee). QUESTIONABLE: TE Mark Bruener (foot). PROBABLE: RB Jerome Bettis (back); WR Will Blackwell (ankle); T John Jackson (knee); S Cornell Lake (hamstring); WR Yancey Thlgpen (knee). DETROIT (7-6) AT MIAMI (8-5) - Lions: DOUBTFUL: LB Richard Jordan (hamstring); CB Corey Raymond (toot). QUESTIONABLE: LB George Jamison (shoulder). PROBABLE: G Mike Compton (rib). Dolphins: OUT: S Bracey Walker (leg-Injured reserve). DOUBTFUL: TE Frank Wainrlght (pectoral). QUESTIONABLE: RB Jim Kitts (groin). PROBABLE: WR Charles Jordan (toe); CB Sam Madison (ankle); WR Brian Manning (knee); RB Jerrls McPhail (ankle); T Richmond Webb (knee). GREEN BAY (10-3) AT TAMPA BAY (9-4) -Packers: QUESTIONABLE: DE Paul Frase (back); WR Terry Mlckens (knee); TE Jeff Thomason (ankle). PROBABLE: DT Gilbert Brown (ankle). Buccaneers: QUESTIONABLE: WR Horace Copeland (ankle); LB Rufus Porter (neck); G Jim Pyne (groin). PROBABLE: RB Mike Alstott (shoulder). INDIANAPOLIS 0-12) AT NEW YORK JETS (8-1) - Colts: OUT: CB Dedrlc Mathis (knee). QUESTIONABLE: LB Elijah Alexander (ankle); S Robert Blackmon (thigh); LB Stephen Grant (neck); CB Carlton Gray (hand); QB Paul Justin (knee); RB Lamont Warren (ribs). PROBABLE: WR Aaron Bailey (thigh); S Ray McElroy (shoulder). Jets: OUT: T Jumbo Elliott (Achilles-Injured reserve); T David Williams (back). QUESTIONABLE: CB Aaron Glenn (knee). DOUBTFUL: QB Glenn Foley (knee). PROBABLE: DT Jason Ferguson (shoulder). MINNESOTA (8-5) AT SAN FRANCISCO (11-2) - Vikings: OUT: QB Brad Johnson (neck). DOUBTFUL: OL Scott Dill (back); CB Leonard Wheeler (ankle). QUESTIONABLE: WR Chris Walsh (thigh). PROBABLE: DE Fernando Smith (groin); S Orlando Thomas (hamstring). 49ers: OUT: RB Garrison Hearst (clavicle); WR Jerry Rice (knee). PROBABLE: G Kevin Go-gan (knee); CB Marquez Pope (foot); CB Fran-kie Smith (knee); S Rod Woodson (shoulder); DT Bryant Young (ankle). NEW ENGLAND (8-5) AT JACKSONVILLE (9-4) - Patriots: QUESTIONABLE: WR Terry Glenn (hamstring); WR Dietrich Jells (knee). PROBABLE: WR Shawn Jefferson (ankle); CB Steve Lofton (hamstring); RB Curtis Martin; (shoulder); DT Henry Thomas (knee). Jaguars: DOUBTFUL: C Michael Cheever (back). PROBABLE: T Tony Boselll (ankle); DE Tony Brackens (ankle); LB Kevin Hardy (hamstring); RB Natrone Means (ankle); DT Esera Tuaolo (ankle); G Rich Tylskl (quadricep). NEW YORK GIANTS (7-5-1) AT PHILADELPHIA (6-6-1) - Giants: OUT: C Derek Engler (ankle); DE Cedrlc Jones (leg); LB Ryan Phillips (knee). DOUBTFUL: S Brandon Sanders (groin). QUESTIONABLE: RB Rodney Hampton (knee). PROBABLE: RB Tiki Barber (thigh). Eagles: QUESTIONABLE: G Ian Beckles (foot); WR Chris T. Jones (knee); CB Randy Kinder (ankle). PROBABLE: DT Edward Jasper (asthma); DE Greg Jefferson (back); DE Ndukwe Kalu (thumb); CB Troy. Vincent (hip). OAKLAND (4-9) AT KANSAS CITY (10-3) -Raiders: QUESTIONABLE: G Lester Holmes (back); CB Albert Lewis (knee); OE Anthony Smith (quadricep). PROBABLE: LB Rob Fre-derlckson (foot); T Pat Harlow (back). Chiefs: OUT' QB Elvis Grbac (shoulder). QUESTIONABLE: DE John Browning (calf). PROBABLE: RB Kimble Anders (ankle); WR Lake Dawson (knee); LB Donnie Edwards (thumb); CB James Hasty (back). ST. LOUIS (3-10) AT NEW ORLEANS (5-8) -Rams: QUESTIONABLE: DE Leslie O'Neal (foot). PROBABLE: TE Ernie Conwell (back); G Zach Wiegert (shoulder). Saints: QUESTIONABLE: TE John Farquhar (ankle); LB Mark Fields (neck); WR Eric Guilford (concussion); S Anthony Newman (neck); TE Nicky Savole (ankle). PROBABLE: C Jerry Fontenot (neck); DT Wayne Martin (shoulder); DT Plo Sagapo-lutele (thumb). SEATTLE (6-7) AT BALTIMORE (44-1) -Seahawks: OUT: T Howard Ballard (arm); RB Reggie Brown (knee); DT Cortez Kennedy (ankle); CB Shawn Springs (thumb); P Rick Tuten (pelvis). DOUBTFUL: LB Joe Cain (kneeankle); G Derrick Graham (neck). QUESTIONABLE' CB Jeremy Lincoln (ankle). Ravens: OUT' G Leo Goeas (chest). DOUBTFUL: CB Eugene Daniel (thigh). QUESTIONABLE: S Rondell Jones (groin); S Stevon Moore (knee); R B Tony Vinson (thigh). PROBABLE: RB Jay Graham (ankle); CB DeRon Jenkins (back); CB Antonio Langham (back); QB Vlnny Testa-verde (knee); DE Keith Washington (calf). WASHINGTON (64-1) AT ARIZONA (3-10) -Redskins: OUT: RB Terry Allen (ankle); DT Chris Mims (abdomen). PROBABLE: "WR Henry Ellard (groin); G Tre' Johnson (shoulder); DT Ryan Kuehl (ankle); RB Marc Logan (groin); C Jeff Uhlenhake (Knee); WR Michael Westbrook (knee). Cardinals: Reports no new Injuries. Monday CAROLINA (4-7) AT DALLAS (4-7) - Panthers: OUT: WR Mark Carrier (hand). DOUBTFUL: WR Raghib Ismail (shoulder). PROBABLE: LB Michael Barrow (groin); WR Rae Carruth (knee); QB Kerry Collins (concussion); S Damon Plerl (toot). Cowbeys: OUT: RB Daryl Johnston (neck); T Mark Tuinel (knee). DOUBTFUL: CB Delon Sanders (rib). QUESTIONABLE: S Darren Woodson (shoulder). PROBABLE: QB Troy Aikmjn (back); DT Tony Casillas (ankle); T Tony Hutson (groin); S Singor Mobley (ankle); G Nate Newton (knee); RB Emmltt Smith (shoulder); T Erik Williams (ankle). Palm Beach Post Wire Services CINCINNATI Corey Dillon rushed for 246 yards an NFL record for a rookie running back and set a club record with four touchdowns as the Cincinnati Bengals beat the Tennessee Oilers 41-14 Thursday night. Cincinnati (5-9) has scored 114 points in its past three games with 36-year-old Boomer Esiason starting at quarterback. He threw for 253 yards Thursday. But it was Dillon who won the crowd's cheers and a place among the NFL's top running backs. The second-round draft choice out of Washington stiff-armed the Oilers (7-7) while breaking one long run after another, scoring on runs of 2, 31, 1 . ana z varas ana movea aneaa oi Tampa Bay's Warrick Dunn for most yards by a rookie running back this season. With just under 2:00 to play, Dillon broke Brown's 1957 rook ie record of 237 yards. He took a handoff from Esiason, bolted right and bulled for 10 yards while the crowd cheered his name. Dillon brutalized a defense that was ranked third in the league against the run and had a lot of motivation. The Oilers were coming off a 27-14 victory over Dallas on Thanksgiving Day and needed another win to stay in playoff contention. The two-prong attack of Esia son throwing and Dillon running shredded the same defense that stopped Troy Aikman and Em- mitt Smith so easily only a week earlier. The game was decided by half time, when the Bengals had 321 total yards Dillon had 152 rushing and Esiason 161 passing and a 28-0 lead. Unable to rely on Eddie George and their ball- control ground game, the Oilers were at a loss to move the ball against a defense that had allowed 922 yards in the last two games. Punter Reggie Roby was their leading rusher at half time Critics haven't MITCHELL From 1C Achilles' tendon in 1993, Mitchell started seven games and threw for 1,173 yards. Just in time for his free agency. Had Marino not been injured, Mitchell said, "I'd probably still be (with the Dolphins). It's hard to do when you're a backup when you play behind a guy like Marino, who never got hurt and always played and you just knew you were going to sit on the bench. "I watched a lot of other guys who were drafted before I was, a lot of guys that had already been given chances to play, and a lot of them are out of the league now. And it's because when they got their spot, they didn't take advantage. I just knew I had to make it work when I got in there." But when he got to Detroit he learned a quarterback can also be a target for criticism. "He appears to handle it well, but he's a human being, like all of us," Lions coach Bobby Ross said. of Mitchell's recent games How Scott Mitchell has fared in the Lions' current three-game winning streak (a 99.8 QB rating in those games): OPPONENT An. C0MP. YARDS TD INT Minnesota 29 21 271 2 O Indianapolis 28 16 150 0 0 Chicago 31 20 282 2 1 TOTALS 88 57 703 4 1 "You hear that kind of thing, it's got to be bothersome to him. I'm quite certain of that. I've tried to get him to ignore it. I hear it, too. It's very quick to happen." The previous three years, Mitchell took abuse along with coach Wayne Fontes, who constantly tinkered with his variations the run-and-shoot. Mitchell said the current system keeps defenses more off guard.

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